Prayers in purple; Warren family, friends hold vigil, seek answers in homicide

WARREN — Family and friends of Desirae Boss remembered her by decorating the outside of her home off Transylvania Avenue with purple bows and ribbons and releasing 32 purple balloons in her memory. The 32-year-old woman’s favorite color was purple.

A vigil was held Sunday afternoon for Boss, who was found with a gunshot wound to the head last week in a wooded area of southwest Warren. The coroner has ruled the death a homicide.

Alesia Code, Boss’ aunt, said she called her niece “Daisy” and wanted to decorate the outside porch with purple, which is for royalty. In addition to the bows and ribbons, purple candles also were lit, and prayers were said later in the evening.

“We are purpled out, but Desirae would have loved this,” Code said.

Many of those who attended wore purple.

Denise Code, Boss’ mother, said she can’t understand how someone could kill her daughter.

“She was only 4-foot-9, and yes, she was very energetic and a firecracker, but she was my baby. I loved my daughter unconditionally. She meant everything to me. Whatever she was going through I was there for her. I was used to her calling me every day,” Code said.

Code said she hopes police will continue probing her daughter’s death.

Code said Boss’ 12-year-old daughter, as well as Boss’ siblings, have been devastated since receiving the news.

“My daughter had the biggest heart and would always say if I was upset, ‘Bring it in. Bring it in,’ and then give me a hug. I can’t hug my daughter anymore. My heart is shattered,” Code said.

Code said she lost another daughter in 2016.

“I am asking for justice. I do not understand how someone could do this to another human being. She did not deserve this. I do not want another mother or father to have to endure this,” she said.

Boss was last seen Sept. 25 at the Family Dollar Store on West Market Street. Her vehicle also was missing.

Alesia Code said she had been holding out for hope that Boss would be found.

“My sister called me with the devastating news. We were all praying for her. My sister was crying, so I knew she was no longer with us,” Alesia Code said.

“I need for my sister and our family to have justice. Someone has to be brought to justice. … Warren has a history of not solving murders. They will not sweep this under the rug. My family will not let this rest. I will call the police every single day.”

“She had the best heart in the world. People loved her,” she said.

Patricia Gilliam, Boss’ aunt, said this is not the first death in her family, having also lost two nephews.

“I usually see my niece every other day and see her mother at the Willard School picking up the kids. When I heard she was missing, I said we need to go find her. … Someone will have to pay for what they did to my nephews and to her as well,” Gilliam said.

Gilliam said her niece was small and cute with a pretty smile.

“Her death has hit my close and deep. She was loved and to see all the people here showing that love is remarkable. I love them all for that,” she said.